About the Study Guide

You are looking at a preview of what’s in the Missouri Hunter's Ed Course. Feel free to look around, but you’ll need to register to begin progress toward getting your Conservation Heritage Card.

Learn More Register for the Course

The firing sequence for handguns and shotguns is very similar to this sequence shown for a bolt-action rifle.

Cutaway: Bolt closing with parts labeled
The bolt moves forward, compressing the firing pin spring and inserting a cartridge into the chamber.
Cutaway: Cartridge chambered
The firing pin is held back under spring tension.
Cutaway: Firing pin strikes primer
When the trigger is squeezed, the firing pin moves forward, crushing and igniting the primer in the cartridge base.
Cutaway: Cartridge is fired
The primer ignites the gunpowder, generating gas pressure, which forces the bullet forward and out of the barrel.